Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has revealed he hatched a plan to infect his drivers with the Coronavirus, but the idea was rejected by the team’s management.
The 76-year-old, who is known for his outspoken views, wanted to bring Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Alexander Albon, plus AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and Daniil Kvyat together with their junior drivers in a special camp to infect them with the virus, which is spreading around the world and killing thousands.
Marko insists it would have put them in a healthier position for when the season eventually starts, as they would have built up some immunity and the chances of them missing races if they were to catch it later would be reduced.
“We have four Formula 1 drivers and eight or 10 juniors, and the idea was that we would organise a camp to mentally and physically bridge the dead time,” he said in an interview with the ORF television channel.
“They are all strong young men in good health. That way they would be prepared whenever the action starts.
The idea didn’t go down well with Red Bull’s senior management according to Marko, who added: “Let’s put it this way: it has not been well received.”
Marko also believes he has already had the virus but never underwent testing because of a lack of test kits at the time.
“I had what I thought was a severe cold and the symptoms would match corona,” he added. “It was also something that I had never had in this intensity.
“I don’t know if it was because the test options are currently very limited. But as soon as there is a chance, I would like to be tested afterwards.”